Thursday, January 14, 2010

Benefit Coralista, Peachy Please!

Benefit Cosmetics features fun, retro packaging and great products. The story behind the line is as cute and whimiscal as their image. Benefit Cosmetics was started by the Ford twins of San Francisco, California, with the simple idea, "Who says makeup has to be serious to be good?" And with that the playful, sassy and sweet cosmetics line was born.

Today I'm going to review one of my favorite Benefit products: CORALista blush. Coralista is one of Benefit's top sellers and with good reason. I have been looking for a peachy blush but since I'm fair skinned and cool toned, the search hasn't been easy. I happened upon this product at the Benefit counter in Memphis and then received it for my birthday a few months ago.

The wild, tropical themed packaging is the first thing to catch your eye. Coralista comes in a square shaped box, with a pink leopard print design. Even if the packaging is too loud for your taste (personally, I think it's fun!), keep in mind the blush is worth your money and it will be easier to spot in your makeup bag.

Now onto the color- Benefit describes Coralista as "a warm coral-pink cheek powder." The color is one the warm side but the pink tones in Coralista make it wearable for just about any skin tone. Coralista will most definitely flatter warm tones and will offer a believable peachy flush for cool tones. (Check out the color below)

One of my favorite things about this blush is the brush! Usually brushes included with makeup aren't keepers and typically don't perform as well as brushes bought seperately. I tried the blush with my usual makeup brush first but I found the application looked a bit heavy. So, I reached for the Coralista blush brush and what a world of difference. The brush comes with a wooden handel and squared off bristles which are great for emphasizing cheekbones. The blush also lasts a long time, needing no reapplications throughout the day, and offers very subtle shimmer.

I recommend this blush to anyone!

Overal Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Pros: Universally Flattering, Cute Packaging, Easy to Apply & Wear
Cons: Expensive
Price: $28.00
Size: 12.0 g

I'll be reviewing some more Benefit products soon but be sure to check out their Creaseless Cream Eye Shadows/Liners and the One Hot Minute face powder.

*Disclaimer: I have not been paid for any of my reviews. I chose products on my own, through my own interests, and provide honest reports to my readers!*

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Base Coat Bonanza!

Blog time!

Today I'm reviewing two base coats, one's a definite win and the other is a huge fail. Read on to learn more.

First, I'm going to let you in on my new favorite base coat: The Nail Life Revitalizer Treatment in the Original Formula. Yes, treatment. The great thing about this product is that it can be used in several different ways. First, it serves as an excellent base coat, to be used before applying your polish. It make your nails smooth like glass and shiny. Your polish will apply easily, adhering to the base coat without being so "sticky," that the polish loses its smoothness. Next, it can be used as a weekly or daily treatment for weak, sensitive, or damaged nails. You can apply it alone to protect your nails or as a pre-treatment and then use your favorite base coat. Finally, I have read that it can used as a top coat. I can tell that Nail Life would add shine but personally, I'd stick with my favorite quick dry top coat.

Keep in mind, the Nail Life Revitalizer Treatment is on the thicker side since it protects your nails from damage. You can find this product at Sally Beauty Supply for $7.99. It comes in a large bottle (1.19 oz) and can be found on sale from time to time. Nail Life also offers a Formaldehyde-Free version of this product as well as a Gripper Base Coat, Ridge Filler, Cuticle Treatment, and more.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Versatile, Performs Well, Quantity & Quality!
Cons: Slightly Expensive
Size: 1.19 oz

And here's my not-so-favorite base coat of late: Sally Hansen Insta-Grip Fast Dry Base Coat. I bought this product at Walgreens when I was looking for a new base coat. I've had good luck with most of Sally Hansen's nail products this one was a disappointment. It may be a bit unfair to pit this product against Nail Life since it is not a treatment. Therefore, it's not as versatile or protective. However, as a plain ol' base coat, it's no good either. It took a long time to dry and was incredibly sticky. My polish did not go on smoothly at all. In fact, it was bumpy and streaky with bubbles. I waited plenty of time for it dry. Maybe others will have a better experience with Insta-Grip but I was disappointed. The only good thing I can say is that the product is inexpensive and shiny. The Sally Hansen Insta-Grip Fast Dry Base Coat is priced at $5 to $6 and can be found at drugstores.

Overall Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars
Pros: Inexpensive, Readily Available, Shiny, Inexpensive
Cons: Performs Poorly, Dries Slowly (for a Quick Dry!), Ineffective.
Size: .45 fl oz

There you have it! Do you have a favorite base coat? Do you use a base coat regularly? Let me know!